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Excise & Customs Tariffs set to be overhauled from 1st January, 2012

7th December, 2011 The Indian Central Excise and Customs Tariffs are set to undergo some major changes. Changes are being made to align Indian Customs and Central Excise Tariff Schedules with HSN amendments as approved by the World Customs Organization. The amendments are being made as per Sections 60(a)(ii) and 73(a)(ii) of Finance Act, 2011. These provisions come into effect from 1st of ...

Supplementary Protection Certificate for medicine patents

5th December, 2011 The expiry of patent for Lipitor and subsequent steps by companies to market the generic version and the erstwhile patentee to safeguard its revenue stream has grabbed headlines. It is undisputed that research and development costs are substantial and patentees do seek wider time horizon of exclusivity to recoup or reap benefits of research. The SPC is one such device by wh...

AIF Regulations set to be toned down

30th November, 2011 SEBI has clarified that PEs raising funds from abroad will not be covered under the proposed regulations for Alternative Investment Funds (AIF). A concept paper and draft of the proposed regulations covering AIF were released by SEBI in August, 2011. The proposal envisaged registration and compliance requirements for AIF defined as ‘pooling or raising of private capital...

WTO holds US COOL provisions violative of TBT agreement

25th November, 2011 Certain provisions of Certificate of Origin Labelling (COOL) requirements brought by the U.S. have been held by WTO Panel as violative of Article 2.1 of the Technical Barriers to Trade Agreement (TBT) between the WTO members. As per the provisions, collectively called as COOL measures, the retailer in the U.S. is under obligation to inform his buyers, the country of or...

New forms to gather information on transfer pricing & international transactions

25th November, 2011 The Central Board for Direct Taxes (CBDT), India has invited suggestions and comments on devising a separate proforma for obtaining information in transfer pricing cases and changes in the existing proforma for information sought from countries with which India has DTAA or Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA). The Indian Tax Administration, in its communication dated...

Procedures to set-off export receivables against import payables, relaxed

24th November, 2011 In a major move at delegating more powers to banks, the Reserve Bank of India has empowered Authorised Dealer Category-I banks to deal with the cases of “set-off” of export receivables against import payables. This ‘set-off’ required the nod of RBI earlier.  The RBI, in its press release, states that it has been allowing requests from the exporters through their AD Categor...

IP Valuation norms key to financing growth

24th November, 2011 Malaysia is seriously considering introduction of a framework for IP valuation so that they can be offered as collaterals. Recent valuations like Nortel or Kodak or building up a patent treasure chest as it has come to be called have put the spotlight on IP valuation. The Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC) and Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia (MyIPO...

IP Protection by LDCs and WTO

24th November, 2011 Least Developed Countries will get more time to protect intellectual property as per latest developments in the World Trade Organisation. The TRIPS (intellectual property) Council of WTO Members has reached a consensus agreement on the draft decision which is expected to be adopted in the Ministerial Conference in Geneva in December, 2011. The original 2005 deadline for ...

Negative list for Service Tax in Budget 2012

November 17, 2011 The Central Board of Excise & Customs will shortly release a revised concept paper on the negative list of services. Mr. V.K. Garg, Joint Secretary, Tax Research Unit, C.B.E. & C. informed that the government has received more than 1000 responses to the concept paper floated for public debate in August this year. He was addressing the National Conference on Service Tax orga...

Transfer pricing at crossroads

11th November, 2011 Russia is expected to usher in a new legislation for transfer pricing from January, 2012 as set out in the Federal Law No. 227-FZ. The new law would apply to all companies whose transactions qualify as controlled and they would have to adopt one of the five methods of calculating price for tax purpose to determine whether a market price was used. In line with OECD guidelin...

Russia now closer to WTO entry

(Россия теперь ближе к вступлению в ВТО) 11th November, 2011  On 10th November, 2011, the WTO Working Party on accession of Russia gave its approval to the package on Russia’s term of entry to the World Trade Organisation.  The accession recommendations will be sent to the Ministerial Conference of the WTO Trade Ministers to be held on 15-17 of December this year. After that Russian Parliam...

Tobin Tax in times of crisis

9th November, 2011 India introduced the Securities Transaction Tax (STT) in 2004 amidst fierce opposition. The tax is applicable on purchase or sale of equity shares, derivatives, units of equity-oriented funds through a recognised stock exchange in India or the sale of a unit of an equity-oriented fund to a mutual fund. However, the government is now thinking of a roll-back citing reasons li...

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